Вы находитесь на странице: 1из 68

LITTLE BLUE BOOK NO.

Edited by £. Ha ldeman- Julius


A Q1
^fy X

Psychology for Beginners


Hereward Carrington, Ph. D.
LITTLE BLUE BOOK NO. 491
edited by E. Haldeman- Julius

Psychology for Beginners


Hereward Carrington, Ph. D.
Author of "The Problems of Psychical Research,'
"Modern Psychical Phenomena," "The
Coming Science." etc.

HALDEMAN- JULIUS COMPANY


GIRARD, KANSAS
Copyright, .

Haldeman-Julius Company

PRINTED IN THE UNITBD STATBB OF AME5»A


PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
The word "Psychology" originally meant the
study of the soul. The human soul was thought
to be a sort of entity, exhibiting qualities or
"faculties," which became manifest to us as
various psychological manifestations. The last
century saw the gradual development of a

"psychology without a soul" a psychology
based upon the study of mind, as manifested
in human beings; it therefore became the study
of consciousness.
Until relatively recently, the word psychology
meant only this. Within the past few years,
however, the scope of this science has been
enormously increased. When we speak of
Psychology, we no longer mean, merely, the
adult, human, normal consciousness. We must
define now our terms more accurately and in

greater detail. We have psychologies just as
we no longer have "insanity," but insanities.
The science has been enlarged. We know ani-

mal psychology which deals with the mind
of lower animals— extending all the way down
the scale to the simplest organisms. We have
Educational psychology, which deals with the
psychology of childhood, and the best methods
of training the young mind and developing it.
We have individual psychology, dealing with
the relationship of the individual to his en-
vironment, and going into the details of his
own mental make-up. We have social psychol-
ogy, which deals with the instincts and desires
* ±>SYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
of man, as related to the society in which he
dwells. We have abnormal psychology, deal-
ing with the varied derangements, abnormal-
ities and defects of the human mind. We
have aream phychology. especially studied
by psycho-analysis. We also have the psy-
chology of the crowd, so different from the
individual in the crowd. We have the psy-

chology of the subconscious mind that vast
realm which was practically a closed book to
the psychologists of the last century. We have
Oriental psychology, which is entirely different
from our own, in many respects. We have
supernormal psychology, which deals with cer-
tain alleged "psychical" phenomena, and en-
deavors to explain them along psychological
lines. We have psychology of religion, history,
politics, etc.
It willbe necessary to devote a brief space to
all these sections, in order that a bird's-eye view
of the whole subject may be obtained. First of
all, however, a few words as to the general meth-
ods and scope of psychology.
The older psychology was based almost en-
tirely upon "Introspection" —that is to say, sub-
jective analysis of the mind and its activities. A
great deal of valuable material was secured in
this manner. Later on, came "experimental
psychology" —the
"new psychology," as it was
called for some —
time based upon accurate
laboratory measurements, by means of suitable
instruments of precision. This dealt very large-
ly with the various reactions of the subject
experimented upon. Still more recently, the so-

called "Behavioristic" psychology, which stud-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS &

ies the behavior of the subject, and contends


that the inner, mental activities can be inter-
preted in this manner. A brief summary of the
behavioristic psychology will be given later on.
Whatever theory we may hold as to the rela-
tion of brain and mind, it is certain that the
two are in some intimate way related to one
another. Whether the activities of the brain
actually cause or produce consciousness; or vice
versa; or whether these two are but opposite

sides of the same shield but differing aspects
of reality, (just as a decayed tooth and the pain
caused by it are differing aspects of the same
thing) cannot be decided;, it is a metaphysical
problem, which need not be discussed now, ^nice
it falls more properly under the province of
philosophy than of psychology. For all prac-
tical purposes, we may take it for granted that
brain and mind are in some unknown and
intimate way connected, and that thought and
the operations of consciousness are coincidental
with the activities of the brain.
The human brain is a delicate and beautiful
structure, of great complexity. The older
"physiological psychology" really amounted to
little more than physiology, since it dealt with
mind largely in terms of brain. Nowadays,
psychology is recognized as a separate science,
and we can discuss its problems in purely
mental terms or language, without referring to
the brain.
In discussing cases of multiple personality,
for example, we can now do so without using
physiological terms, which was not the case
until a few years ago. In other words, we now
C PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
recognize that the psychic sphere is a legitimate
one of its own; and, although it is in some
manner related to the brain-changes, this fact
is not taken into account; the two worlds are
regarded as distinct and separate, for all prac-
tical purposes, —
although perhaps united in
some metaphysical sense ultimately. Details as
to the general anatomy of the brain can be
found in any physiology, wherein the various
motor and sensory centers are located, the
higher association centers, etc. Dr. Bastian's
work, "The Brain as an Organ of Mind," is a

good book, although several years old. But
there is a wealth of material upon this subject,
<

to which we have no space to do more than
refer in the present booklet.

The human mind is just as complex as the


human brain. It reasons, wills, feels, associates,
remembers, perceives time and space, forms con-
cepts, forms habits, imagines, gives its atten-
tion, concentrates, discriminates, compares, in-
duces, deduces, thinks abstractly, is subject to
illusions, hallucinations, insanities, as well as
flights of genius, directs the flow of thought,
experiences emotions, feels sensations, experi-
ences the constant feeling of "self" as a back-
ground, etc., etc. And every mind in the whole
world is different, both in its structure and
its mode of action! No two people think and
feel exactly alike. Each person is a world unto
himself. He himself represents an invisible enti-
ty, somehow tucked away in that little dark
chamber which we call the skull, and within
that his whole individual universe is contained.
Let us now endeavor to dissect this complex
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS T

mental organism, and see how "works." We


it
shall try to discover the nature and structure
of the human mind, and ascertain how it
operates. We shall devote a brief chapter to
each of its varied activities, and then endeavor
to weld together our findings, so as to enable
us to understand the real nature of the Self.
First, however, a few words as to the various
"Psychologies."

ABNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY.
This is occupying a prominent place in mod-
ern psychological literature. There is a "Journal
of Abnormal Psychology," devoted especially to
its problems. A variety of fascinating questions
fall under this heading, a few of which I have
briefly touched upon in the section dealing with
"The Structure of the Mind." Space prevents
further treatment here. The reader may con-
sult such a book as Dr. Isador H. Coriat's "Ab-
normal Psychology" for further particulars.

ANIMAL PSYCHOLOGY.
A vast literature exists upon this subject also.
Darwin's "Expression of the Emotions" is, of
course, classical. Lindsay's "Mind in the Lower
Animals" (2 vols.), and Mills's "Animal Intel-
ligence" are useful books. Some original and
ingenious speculations are contained in Ouspen-
sky's "Tertium Organum." A most interesting
work, from a practical point cf view (that of a
trapper anJ hunter) is "How Animals Talk,"
by William J. Long. A study of the so-called
"talking animals" is "Lola: a Contribution to
J PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
the Thought and Speech of Animals." Chapters
on the marvellous horses of Elberfeld are con-
tained in Maeterlinck's "Our Unknown Guest,"
and in my own "Modern Psychical Phenomena."
The question of Instinct in animals has also
received extensive treatment. C. Lloyd Morgan's
works are classical in this respect: "Habit and
Instinct," "Instinct and Experience," etc. See
also Chadbourne's "Instinct in Animals and
Men," and McDougall's treatment of the subject
in his "Social Psychology," in his "Psychology,"
and a number of articles on this subject in the
"Journal of Abnormal Psychology," and similar
periodicals.

PSYCHOLOGY OF POLITICS, HISTORY, ETC.


This branch of our subject deals with such
questions as the mental life of nations, religion
and the state, national psychology, etc. A use-
ful book in this connection is J. A. Dewe's
"Psychology of Politics and History."

RELIGIOUS PSYCHOLOGY.
Avoluminous literature also exists upon this
subject. Attacks upon religion are to be found
in such books as Leuba's "Belief in God and
Immortality," and Theodore Schroeder's writ-
ings, which endeavor to trace all religion to sex.
On the other hand, are to be found such books
as Barrow's "The Validity of the Religious
Experience," and William James' "Varieties of
Religious Experience." An extensive study of
Mysticism is Poulain's "The Graces of Interior
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 9

Prayer." The literature on this subject is so


vast, however, that it would be impossible even
to indicate xiie sources of reference.

EDUCATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY.
The mindof the pupil, the aims of the teacher,
methods of instruction, school work, etc., form
the subject-matter of this branch of knowledge.
A useful book in this connection is Hugo "Mun-
sterberg's "Psychology and the Teacher."

BUSINESS PSYCHOLOGY.
Of late years, much has been written concern-
ing this topic. Many works upon it have been
issued, among which one might mention Link's
"Employment Psychology," and Atkinson's
"Psychology of Salesmanship."

SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY.
The most noteworthy book dealing with this
question is undoubtedly William McDougall's
"Social Psychology." Since the publication of
this book, a number of others have been issued,
but the student would do well to begin with
this one. Much useful material is also to be
found in H. G. Wells' "Outline of History."

INDIVIDUAL PSYCHOLOGY.
This covered by any popular book, such as
is
the present one.

CROWD PSYCHOLOGY.
An individual in a crowd is usually lost, more
or less —mentally no less than physically. If
10 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
the crowd is carried away by some emotion or
intense excitement, so is the individual in it.
Crowd psychology is generally primitive; emo-
tions overrule intellect. An interesting work
upon this subject is G. LeBon's "Psychology of
the Crowd." See also McDougall's "The Group
Mind," and Trotter's "Instincts of the Herd in
Peace and War."

DREAM PSYCHOLOGY.
This is covered by such books as Freud's
"Dream Psychology," Walsh's "Psychology of
Dreams," Coriat's "The Meaning of Dreams,"
etc. See also the little book upon "Dreams" in
the present series, and the references therein
given.
ORIENTAL PSYCHOLOGY.
This extensive, in one Svmse, sparse in an-
is
other. Orientals have written much about them-
selves, but largely concerning their mystical
states. Rhys Davids's "Buddhist Psychology"
is perhaps a good summary of the Hindu
Teachings (a section of them). The various
Sacred Books of the East give, perhaps, as
good a clue to their inner life as any.

SUPERNORMAL PSYCHOLOGY.
This, naturally, falls within the province of
Psychical Research (See the volumes upon this
topic in the present series). F. W. H. Myers*
"Human Personality" is d classic; an excellent
and sane book is Prof. Th. Flournoy's "Spirit-
ism and Psychology," translated by the present
writer.
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 11

PSYCHOLOGY OF THE SUBCONSCIOUS.


Here, again, a voluminous literature exists,
dealing with the various problems presented.
Morton Prince's "The Unconscious," and Joseph
Jastrow's "The Subconscious," are valuable
books. A. T. Schofield's book, "The Uncon-
scious Mind," may also be consulted, How
new this idea of the subconscious mind is may-
be seen from the fact that it was hardly men-
tioned in James' "Psychology." The differ-
ence between unconscious and subconscious
consists in this: that whereas the former is
thought to represent a sort of "unconscious
cerebration" (Carpenter), without definite
thought, the subconscious mind is believed to
carry-on a lively mentation of its own; there
is an unconscious consciousness, so to say.
This idea has been disputed by some author-
ities, but there is a mass of evidence in its
fa"vor. Indeed, investigations of the subcon-
scious mind have taken precedence over those
into the conscious mental processes, of late
years. The mass of published material dealing
with the psychology of the subconscious is now
enormous.

BEHAVIORISM.
Tkis is a relatively new school in psychology,
and has been the subject for much controversy.
Its main contention is that behavior is the
key to a man's real, inner being, and that,
from this, his total self can be gauged. His
instinctive and emotional equipment his habits,

12 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS


his activities, his social adaptability, his recre-
ation and sports, his sexual life, his reactions
to conventional standards, his personal bias and

peculiarities, etc. these are all factors in the
determination of his inner mental life. In other

words; as a man behaves so is he! Behavior-
istic psychology, however, totally fails to dis-
close to us the essence of self and personality
what it is. Those who may be interested in
pursuing this line of reading further may con-
sult Dr. John B. Watson's "Psychology: from
the Standpoint of a Behaviorist."

THE SENSES.
The generally recognized senses are:
five
fight, hearing, taste, touch and smell. These
depend upon certain sense-organs, (the eye,
ear, etc ), and also upon specific sense-centers
in the brain. The structure and physiology of
these organs can be found in any good text
book on the subject. Suffice it to say that, in
the case of the eye, for example, certain incom-
ing ether vibrations are converted, by the rods
and cones in the retina of the eye (by a wholly
mysterious process) into nerve-currents, which
a:c transmitted to the sight-centers in the
brain, wherein the sensation of sight occurs.
The ear converts sound waves into nerve-cur-
rents, which we then perceive as sound, etc.
Touch depends upon nerve-currents from the
periphery of the body. Smell and taste are
closely related; in fact, there are only four
primary tastes which are directly conveyed by
the nerves of the tongue. These are sweet,
salt, sour and bitter. All our other "tastes"
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 1%
are dependent upon the sense of smell. That
is why, when we have a "cold," and cannot
smell anything, food seems to nave no taste.
The primary tastes are obtained through the
"taste buds" in the tongue. Smell is a sense
about which relatively little is known.
In addition of these sensations, arising from
the sense organs, there are also other senses,
such as the muscular sense, the temperature
sense, etc. To what extent these may. be
properly classed as separate senses has been
disputed. The so-called "sixth sense" is theoret-
ically a sort of "second sight," of supernormal
origin, which orthodox psychology does not at
present recognize
The sensation of motion should perhaps be
mentioned in this place. Such sensations are
of two kinds: (1) sensations of objects
moving over our sensory surfaces; and (2)
sensations of our whole person's translation
through space.
The former of these has been much studied,
though little definite can be said regarding it
here. Curiously, while the sensation of a
moving object can be accurately determined,
it is most difficult to locate a number of
stationary objects on the skin (if the eyes are
closed). Thus, if one places the finger-tips
against the chest, one cannot tell how many
fingers are touching (after the first three).
Certain areas of the skin are also quite insen-
sitive; anaesthetic zones of patches sometimes

existing, especially in hysterical subjects, and
these can be pricked without involving any re-
action. These figure largely in the "witchcraft
14 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
trials," of themiddle ages, for it was held that
the witch was insensible to pain wherever the
Devil had touched her. Such spots were, there-
fore, searched for with long needles!
As to the sensation of movement through
space, we often experience this at night, in our
(See my little book
,,
so-called "flying dreams.
in this series on "Dreams.") The Hindus con-
tend, however, that this is an actual pos-
sibility; that the physical body can really be
lifted or "levitated," by means of proper breath-
ing exercises, etc. I have discussed this ques-
tion, briefly, in my volume in thia series de-
voted to "Yoga Philosophy."

SENSATION.
Sensation depends upon certain nerve-cur-
rents, which affect the brain, but are usually
localized or "felt" in a particular spot or area
of the body. If a finger is burnt, for example,
the pain is apparently felt in the finger; never-
theless the actual sensation takes place in the
brtiin, and if the sensory (or afferent) nerves
were cut, no pain would be experienced
Normally, we react to a stimulus of this kind
by immediately withdrawing the hand; this is
due to the motor (or efferent) nerve-currents,
which are sent out, commanding the muscles to
move the hand and arm in question A definite
"reaction" has then taken place. Reactions of
this sort are constantly going on, but most of
them never rise into consciousness. Only when
the sensation is powerful enough to rise above
the so-called "thresliold" does it rise into con-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 15

sciousness, andthe reaction to the given


stimulus is then consciously directed.
The outer world acts upon the periphery
(surface) of the body, giving rise to all sorts
of sensations. Again, various internal organs,
if they are not functioning normally, will give
rise to internal sensations. All such sensa-
tions are conveyed by sensory nerves; and,
when these flow from any specific sense-organ,
only the characteristic sense impression is
thereby conveyed. Thus, the duty of the optic
nerve is to convey sensations of sight; if the
eye be struck violently, the optic nerve., in such
case, does not transmit pain — —
only sight and
we "see stars" instead. This phenomenon is
due to the sudden and violent transmission of
a nerve current flowing along these nerve-
tracts. Similarly with all the other senses.
This fact has given rise to the theory of

"specific nervous energies/' to the theory,
that is, that each sensory nerve conveys the
particular sort of current appropriate to it, and
no other. Certain internal organs, however,
appear to have no sensation. For example, the
brain can be cut up, without any sensation on
the part of the subject. (Of course, before
reaching the brain, pain would be experienced
on the surface of the head, in the skull, etc.)
Sensations are our most primative mental
constituents. They are distinguished from
Perceptions by the fact that the latter are
more complex; they are sensations, plus ideas
about the sensation; hence "pure sensations"
are impossible to us after the first few days of
life.
-,6 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
Sensations differ greatly in the degree of
their intensity; a feeble sensation, however,
if continued, will ultimately rise into con-
sciousness. On the other hand, sensations
which intruded into consciousness at first
may sink below its threshold after a t'me, and
are no longer noticed. Thus, a workman may
sleep in a boiler-factory; soldiers have learned
to sleep amidst the constant booming of c:n-
non, etc. Certain sensations also give rise to
a sort of reverse of themselves. Thus, if one
gazes at a red spot for a time, and then look at
the white ceiling, a green spot will be peen to
form there. This is a so-called "after image,"
and is due to fatigue This can readily be
demonstrated in the case of vision.

INSTINCT.
William James defines Instinct as "the fac-
ulty of acting in such a way as to produce cer-
tain ends, without foresight of the ends, and
without previous education in the performance. ,,
Of late years, much controversy has arisen as

to instinct some authorities contending that
itdoes not exist, (in the old-fashioned sense of
the term) while others have postulated a num-

ber of different instincts all more or less
primitive and innate. (McDougall).
Instincts are certainly impulses —to perform
some action. They vary greatly in complexity,
and are by no means always blind or invar-
iable. They often resemble thought and yet —
it certain that no actual thought is con-
is
cerned in them. Instincts may be inhibited
PSYCHOLOGY ^OR BEGINNERS 17

by habits; they are also transitory. They are


well adapted to certain ends, and an an'mal
or an insect will perform quite complicated
actions, under entirely novel circumstances.
Most of the work done upon instincts, until
lately, was done upon animals of the lower
order; but, more recently, much attention has
been paid to human instincts, and some au-
thorities have contended that human beings
have more instincts than the lower animals.
Instinct will usually cause the creature in
question to perform actions compatible with
its own safety and self-preservation. Instinct
thus grades naturally into Emotion, which will
next be considered.

EMOTION.
We know that practically all emotions give
rise to bodily expression. Darwin wrote an ex-
tensive monograph upon "The Expression of
the Emotions in Men and Animals." Pear,
anger, hatred, etc., find visible expression in
the face, and in the actions of the body. Com-
mon-sense seems to tell us that these- bodily
expressions are the results of the emotion; the
James-Lange theory of the emotions says that
the bodily expressions are the primary factors,
the internal emotions following after. Thus, we
feel sorry because we cry, etc. This theory was
for long popular among psychologists, but is to-
day questioned in many quarters.
Emotions of all sorts are certainly connected
in a very intimate manner with the body and
its internal mechanism. Healthful emotions
stimulate, while destructive emotions inhibit
13 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
and destroy. It has been claimed that emotions
actually cause the secretion of definite chemical
substances, which can be partially expelled in
the breath; varied emotions cause different
colored precipitates in a given solution, etc.
(Elmer Gates.) However this may be, there
can be no question of the beneficial effects of
healthful emotions, and the detrimental effects
of the reverse. It is not so much the effects of
the thought upon the body, as the emotion
aroused by and associated with that thought.
Peeling is the fundamental sensation of all
life. Strong feelings have been called emotions;
these are dependent largely upon the sympa-
thetic nervous system, although the glands of
internal secretion are also important factors.
These are stimulated by the emotion, and also
give expression to it.
Emotions have, of late years, been the sub-
ject of much study. It is now believed that the
various complex emotions are built-up, or com-
pounded of simpler ones. An analysis of these
complex emotions has resulted in their being
resolved into their component factors. On the
other hand, organized systems of emotional
tendencies (centered about some object) exist
in all of us, and these have been called "senti-
ments." This idea has played a large part in
contemporary psychological literature.
Dr. William McDougall, in his "Social
Psychology," has made a very ingenious an-
alysis of the various emotions. He shows at
considerable length how the complex emotions
are built-up from the simpler ones. Thus: —
gratitude is a compound of tender emotion and
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 1»

negative self- feeling; scorn is a compound of


disgust and anger; fascination, of horror and
wonder; envy, of negative self-feeling and
anger; reproach, of anger and tender emotion;
anxiety, of anticipatory pain, tender emotion

and anger against the source of the threatened
harm; pity, of tender emotion and sympathetic-
ally-induced pain, etc. Goddard ("Psychology
of the Normal and Subnormal") says that low
orders of intelligence (morons, etc.) experience
only relatively simple emotions; many of the
higher forms are lacking in them, and that
"only higher intelligences have the highest
emotions." The primary emotions thus seem
to belong to animals and undeveloped humans;
our emotions have evolved in their intensity
and complexity like everything else. That is
why refined and "sensitive" people experience
the deepest and keenest emotions.

CONCEPTION.
"The function by which we mark-off, discrim-
inate, draw a line round, and identify as a
numerically " distinct subject of discourse is
called conception."We may therefore have con-
ceptions of objects, people, qualities, abstract
ideas, etc. Each conception is unique, separate,
and distinct for the subject thinking it. No two
conceptions can ever be quite alike; for no two
individuals conceive things in a similar man-
ner, and the same individual, conceiving the
same thing twice, conceives it in a different
way. The original conception plus, is always
conceived the second time. For, from the purely
physiological point of view, the brain has been
20 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
already somewhat by the first im-
modified
pression, and the second one reacts upon a
modified, and not an unmodified, substratum.
"History never repeats itself;" and no two
thoughts, and no two conceptions, can thus ever
be precisely alike.

PERCEPTION.
These two terms are often confused in the
public mind. Psychologically, however, they
are quite distinct. The consciousness of ma-
terial objects through the senses is called "per-
ception." We perceive them. On the other
hand, weconceive an idea. Perceptions depend
upon our senses and brain-processes; concep-
tions may be independent of the former. It is
true, however, that perceptions depend upon the
inner workings of the mind, as well as upon
sense-impressions.
When we perceive a thing, we recognize or
"know" that thing. But we do not yet think
about it, associate it with other things, etc.
This higher process of the mind has been
termed "apperception." It is applied to the
process by which the mind goes out to meet
the incoming perception, and elaborates it by
higher processes of association, etc. Thus,
through the sensation of sight, you perceive an
orange. But you do not yet say to yourself:
"This is a nice, juicy orange; I like oranges;
it will taste sweet; it will quench my thirst,"
etc. These associative processes of the mind
may be classed, roughly, under the process of
"apperception." They represent syntheses and
associations-
PSTCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS Z\

We are all subject to fallacies of perception.


Our senses may deceive us; or we may draw
wrong deductions from genuine sense impres-
sions. There are thus illusions and halluci-
nations, which resemble one another, but which
may be distinguished thus: Illusions are caused
by wrong inferences from actual, objective sense

impressions as, tor instance wnen a hat and
coat hansoms: on the wall are mistaken for a
irzi', standing at the foot of the bed, etc. In
the case of a hallucination, however, there is
no physical substratum of reality in the outer
world; the whole thing is created from within,

whence it is projected outward, into space.
Some hallucinations of this type seem as "real"
as a solid object would be.
Hallucinations often result from diseased or
irritated seuse-organa, the sense-centers in the
brain, etc. The condition of the blood may
have much to do with this. Delirium tremens
is a good example of hallucination of this type.
But not all hallucinations are abnormal; we
all have them at night when we fall asleep and
dream. We then experience hallucinatory pic-
tures of all sorts of things which are not really
"there." There seem to be, also, odd cases of
"telepathically induced hallucinations," as I
have described in my booket on "Psychical Re-
search," in this series. In such cases, the sub-
ject appears to be perfectly normal at the time.
There can be no doubt, however, that most
hallucinations denote some form of mental or

physical disease as the hallucinations of the
insane, of drug fiends, etc., amply testify.
Z'l PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS

THE PERCEPTION OF SPACE.


Whena baby first begins to notice objects
about it, everything is doubtless more or less
vague and confused. Gradually, order appears
out of chaos. Normal adults have a fairly clear
idea c: the sizes, shapes and distances of objects
— within certain limits. How are we enabled to
do this?
An enormous literature exists upon this sub-
ject. Only a few essentials can be given here.
First of all, it is probably true that the general
feeling of size exists as a detinite quality in
sensation of — intensity of voluminousness.
Varied sensations are inwardly compared with
one another, and, so to say, checked-off.
Smaller objects are discriminated within the
object looked at; the object is usually seen in
relation to other objects, etc. James holds that
"extensity, discernible in each and every sen-
sation .... is the original sensation of space,
out of which all the exact knowledge about
space that we afterwards come to have is woven
by processes of discrimination, association and
selection. " These later powers are developed
as the mind itself develops; on the other hand,
sensations with a certain degree of innate ex-

tensity in them are postulated and are denied
by others!
Ouspensky ("Tertium Organum") asserts that
man is the only three-dimensional animal; the
lower animals are naturally two-dimensional,
and that what we perceive as the third dimen-
sion they perceive as movement. They see only
flat surfaces. This is, however, a much-dis-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 23

puted point, into which we have not time to


enter now; it also takes us into the realm of
animal psychology.

PERCEPTIOxN OF TIM?.
Our perceptipn (or sense) of tinu differs con-
siderably at diflerent ages, and under different
circumstances. When we are bored, tired, etc.,
time seems to move slowly; when we are in-
terested or excited, it flits by rapidly, etc. A
certain span of time always seems shorter to
old people than to young ones. A year is an
enormous period to a child; whereas an old
man will often exclaim: "How the years have
flown!" Time which is busily occupied seem;
short, but it seems a long period, when looked
back upon. A waiting period, on the other hand,
in which nothing is accomplished, seems in-
terminable during its passage; but it seems ex-
tremely brief, when viewed in retrospect. This
is probably due to the fact that many actions
seem to occupy a long period of time, whereas
a span in which nothing of importance hap-
pens seems to have taken-up no time at all.
The shortest period of time which we can
appreciate is about 1/500 of a second. Exner
recognized two electric sparks to be successive
when the second followed the first at that in-
terval. On the other hand, the longest period
of time which we can accurately distinguish
from longer or shorter bits of time, according
to Wundt, is 12 seconds. We probably have no
sense of "empty" time; but of the flow of
events in time. It has been suggested that
the pulse may be a sort of natural clock, en-
24 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
abling us to appreciate time as it flows (for
instance in sleep), but this hardly serves to ex-
plain many such cases. The same may be said
of the idea that some unknown, but constant,
feature in th^ brain activities is the source of
our perceivi>*i time at all.
When we oecome unconscious, time is obliter-
ated altogether; the sense of time is also
seriously impaired under the influence of cer-
tain drugs (e. g., hasheesh), so that a second
may appear to consume hours, and vice versa.
It has been proved by experiment that subjects
under hypnosis, and some natural somnambules,
have a remarkable sense of time, and can reckon
it with uncanny accuracy. Our conscious mind
is notoriously bad at this sort of thing. The
subconscious mind is the "ready reckoner,"
therefore, which must be added to its other ac-
complishments!

ATTENTION.
When we "pay attention" to a thing, the con-
sciousness is narrowed down to a point, as it
were, and concentrated like the beam of a
searchlight. The greater the degree of atten-
tion, the more this narrowing process takes
place, until the subject may be lost to all save
the immediate object of his inward study. At-
tention may be either voluntary or involuntary;
we may read a book with deep interest, or
stand fascinated by some horrible spectacle,
from which we are unable to avert our eyes.
We may pay attention to objects of sense, or to
ideal or represented objects (intellectual atten-
tion). Attention may also be connected with
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 25

some sense (sight, hearing, etc.); or may be


purely psychical, as in cases of meditation, etc.
Attention may be stimulated by associating the
subject-matter with something of interest, or by
drawing analogies. A person will always pay
attention to something that interests him. The
practical importance of this law should be util-
ized by all teachers, for the child's education
would proceed by leaps and bounds were due
advantage taken of these facts.

DISCRIMINATION.
The word "discrimination" is popularly used
in two senses (1) we speak of a man having
"good discrimination," meaning by that a sort
of good judgment. (2) Discrimination, in the
psychological sense, however, means the notic-
ing of any part of an object, as distinct from
the whole.
All sensations tend to fuse and become a sin-
gle compound; discrimination singles these out,
and separates them. Such differences may be
felt, if they are really different, and different
enough; further, they must fall more or less in
succession upon the same organ, and not simul-
taneously. If they do, they are apt to blend
hopelessly. Especially is this the case if the
elements of the impression have never been ex-
perienced singly before. If we are familiar with
a thing, we can begin to discriminate the ele-
ments going to compose it. It is, however, true
that only such elements as we are acquainted
with, and can imagine separately, can be dis-
criminated, within a total sense impression. If
a thing be associated at one time with one thing
26 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
and at another time with another, this may
become a separate "thing" for the mind, which
singles it out, by an act of discrimination, and
places it in a position by itself. Such acts of
discrimination may be greatly improved by
practice.

ASSOCIATION.
This is the peculiar quality of the mind, by
means of which two or more ideas or memories
are coupled together. Association is thought to
take place largely in the higher centers in the

brain the frontal lobes. Nearly all our higher
education consists in association, and our
mental lives are largely dependent upon it.
Genius is said to consist, largely, in making
associations, and seeing resemblances, which
other people do not. Upon association memory
largely depends.
Association is a very complicated process,
which depends largely upon the brain. Various
anatomical schemes have been devised to ex-

plain and illustrate association, which may be
found in text books upon the subject. Associa-
tion may be partial or complete. Similarity is
one of its distinguishing characteristics (and
causes). Usually, objects which appeal to the
same sense are associated one with another;
but sometimes quite different sense-impressions
are associated, in a very odd manner. The sub-
ject may, e. g., associate a sense of smell with a
visual impression; or a sense of taste with a
definite sound, etc. These are the so-called
"synesthesias." Thus: "salt, for instance, is
described by one observer as dull red, hitter as
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 27

brownish, sweet as clear bright red, and sour as


green or greenish-blue. To another observer the
taste of meat seems red or brown, the taste of
graham bread is rich red in color, while all ice-
creams, (except chocolate and coffee) taste
blue. To still another reporter, the sound of
the word 'intelligence' tastes like fresh sliced
tomatoes, while the sound of the word 'interest*
tastes like stewed tomatoes. . ."

These are unusual associations, however,


which depend either upon some odd nervous
connections between the various sense-centers
in the brain, or upon some purely psychical
associations. Most of our normal associations
deal either with objects or with memories.

IMAGINATION.
Nearly all our imaginations are visual in
character; great composers may imagine the
orchestration of the masterpiece they are com-

posing so vividly, at times, that this amounts
to an auditory hallucination. But most of us
are mere or less limited to visual imaginings;
we "build air-castles in Spain," or imagine our-
selves in various scenes or situations, which
are seen by the "mind's eye." The explanation
usually put forward to explain this is that
"sensations, once experienced, modify the nerv-
ous organism, so that copies of them arise again
in the mind after the original outward stimu-
lus* is gone." No such mental copy, of course,
can arise in the mind, of any sensation which
has never been directly excited from without,
on this theory.
*
tS PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
This power of "visualization" differs greatly
in different individuals; some men are good,
others bad visualizers. Images of sounds, mus-
cular sensations, touch, etc., may also be re-
constructed. These again may be so vivid as to
amount to actual hallucinations.
Imagination consists in the power of the mind
to build-up mental pictures, and project them
into the future, just as memory-images are pro-

jected into the past into our life-experience.
Imagination is that power of the mind which
seems, in one sense, to pierce the veil. While
such imaginings are, as a rule, merely day-
dreams, never coming true, it is also a fact
that all great works must be thought of or
imagined, in some sense, before they are exe-
cuted, or come into being on the material plane.
Someone must have "imagined" the Pyramids
before they were built. Rightly used, then, im-
agination is a very valuable asset, which should

be cherished and utilized just as it can become
destructive, if abused. It had indeed been said
that a sense of humor and imagination are the
two things which distinguish us more than
anything else from the brutes.
Use your imagination, therefore, only keep it
well in leash —
like the thoroughbred horse
which it is!

WILL.
The Will that which seems more intimately
is
a part of our inner Self than almost any other
portion of our mental being. We feel when we
actually will a thing that we thereby set some
hidden energy in motion, which flows outwards,
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS zv

and sets our muscles into action. Or we may


will to accomplish a certain thing, or to feel
or think in a certain way. The will seems to
be centered in the forehead, just above the
eyes and nose, and to form a part of the central
Self or Ego.
Hence the doctrine of the "freedom of the
will." We
feel that we are free to will, to per-
form any given action, or to refrain from per-
forming it. "The human will is free." The
contrary doctrine, on the other hand, "Determi-
nism," contends that this is an illusion; we are
not free; our every action is determined by our

previous trains of thought, our education,

environment, heredity, etc., and that we must
necessarily choose and will as we do. This is
the much-debated philosophical question of

"Free Will Vs. Determinism," which is really
a metaphysical question, and not a psychological
one, and hence cannot be discussed at greater
length in this place.
We may really will to perform a certain
action; or we may merely wish to do so. This
is little more than desire. A wish may exist
without giving rise to the will to carry it out;
the fiat of the will has not gone forth. Action
only follows this fiat of the will. Wish end
desire remain in the world of inaction. Hence

the truth of the old adage, "If wishes were
horses, beggars would ride." The reason they
do not ride is that the wish is never translated
into action.
Ideas of action may be expressed in action, or

they may be inhibited prevented from being
actively expressed. There is always a tendency
30 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
on the part of the body thus to carry out any
given volitional impulse. This is often checked,
for our judgment tells us that we should not
perform the action in question. On the other
hand, we may force ourselves to perform a
given action, from which we instinctively
shrink.
We may have an impulse to perform a spe-
cific action,but we "let it go.'' Again, we may
hold steadily before the mind the idea of per-
forming that action, until we actually do go.
Now, according to many psychologists, this act
of voluntary attention is all that the will is; it
is nothing else. "The essential achievement of
the will. . .when it is most voluntary, is to
.

attend to the direct object and hold it fast be-


fore the mind. The doing so is the fiat; and
it is a mere physiological incident that when
the object is thus attended to, immediate motor
consequences should ensue. Effort of attention
is thus the essential phenomenon of will. .
."

There are many of us, however, who cannot


accept or believe this. We see in the human
will something more than this. There is some-
thing more in will than mere effort of attention.
Recent experiments, conducted by means of
delicate recording instruments, seem to show
us that the human will is indeed an energy,
capable of registering itself, or being registered,
by suitable apparatus; while the experiments
of Dr. Charles Russ also appear to prove that
the human eye, under the dynamic action of
the will, can be made to emit a living force,
capable of affecting delicate instruments. We
feel that, when we love, some vital energy radi-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 31

ates from the eyes; that the glance of hate is


more than a mere metaphor. The will and the
outward vision (if I may use the term) seem
to be -subtly connected, and experiments such as
these seem to prove it. And if so, they cast a
new and vitally important light upon the doc-
trine of free-will. For our immediate practical
purposes, however, it may be said that the will
seems to send forth a fiat, of a nature wholly
unknown, following upon which definite actions
are performed in accordance with that volitional
effort.

MEMORY.
A sensation, an emotion, an idea, etc., may
leave a more or less permanent memory which
can, perhaps, be recalled years later. Where
was this memory in the meanwhile? The usual
explanation is that a sort of groove or trace is

cut into certain brain cells, just as the record-
ing needle cuts a groove in the phonograph
record, recording at the same time the music;
and that the act of recalling a memory is
analogous to reproducing the music, by means
of a suitable device upon the phonograph. The
brain is, on this view, "the physical basis of
memory."
One difficulty which at once arises, however,
is that, inasmuch as all parts of the body are
constantly being made-over, and replaced by
new parts, these brain-cells must also be re-
placed (within a few weeks, months or years)
and the record would vanish with them. The
usual reply to this is that the newly laid-down
brain-celi in some way "inherits" the memory
32 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
from the old one, and hence somehow continues
to store its psycho-physical memories, which are
again passed-on when this cell is replaced, and
so on forever.
Needless to say, such an interpretation of the
facts strains our credulity. None other, how-
ever, has ever been forthcoming. But the in-
herent difficulty of the case has led some phil-
— —
osophers notably Bergson to defend the idea
that the brain is merely a mechanism for repro-
ducing memories, and that memory itself re-
sides within some spiritual storehouse, where
it remains until recalled. The legitimacy of
such a view, of course, rests upon the possible
proof of such a super-physical world as that
postulated.
Memory depends upon a variety of factors.
A healthy brain is essential to a good memory;
good blood, bathing healthy nerve-cells being
here essential. Memory also depends upon (1)
interest, and (2) association. We remember a
thing which interests us; it makes an "impres-
sion" upon us. Also, if we associate a tiling
with other things, it helps us to remember it.
An isolated fact is hard to remember; but if it
is associated with a number of other things
which we know, or which also interest us, it is
more liable to be recalled. Any one of these
things may then recall the other event, by as-
sociation, and hence the given memory is more
readily accessible.
Memory is first of all recorded, t-hen ,-torad,
then recalled, and finally recognized or "placedr
after it is recalled. Some authors say that
memory consists in three stages, others in as
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 3a
many as five (Hyslop). This is merely a ques-
tion of the sub-division of the process involved.
It has been contended that there is no such
thing as a "good" or a "bad" memory; it all
depends upon the factors above mentioned.
Various artificial schemes have been devised
to improve and perfect the memory; and there
is no doubt that it is a faculty which can be
greatly improved by constant practice. In a
sense, everything is remembered, but it is not
vivid enough to be recalled. Such hidden mem-
ories can often be revived by means of Hypno-
tism, etc. In certain abnormal conditions, the
memory seems to be keenly stimulated, and
events, long forgotten, are recalled, which had
long before been forgotten by the conscious
mind. Many apparently "super-normal" phe-
nomena have been explained in this manner.

REASONING.
One thing which is held above
to elevate us
the brutes, more than all else, our reason.
is
"Man is a rational animal." Yet how few of us
reason, —at any rate systematically!
When in a
crowd, we are away by the psychology
carried
of the crowd; and we are swayed more by our
feelings and emotions than we are by our
reason, as a rule. Yet there can be no doubt
that pure reason is the highest type of think-
ing possible for the normal man.
Reasoning consists in carrying on a logical
.r^d connected eraix. of ill ought, each step ot
v o?ch follows logically from the one preceding
is dependent upon learning, sagacity and
f
it. I
comincn-sense. The essence of reasoning is, o/
5* PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
course, logic, which supposed to portray the
is
highest type of reason. We think about a thing
intellectually, when we reason. We arrive at a
conclusion by a logical train of thought. Each
thought is like the link in a chain. We may
arrive at the conclusion in some other way, by
some process of "intuition," or what not, but
reasoning constitutes the basis of our thinking,
and represents the solid rock, upon which most
men are content to build their intellectual
houses. And in order to reason well, system-
atically clear thinking is required.

SPEECH.
Normally, we communicate with one another
in three ways; by means of marks upon paper
(writing), by movements (sign language), and
by means of air vibrations issuing from the
vocal chords (speech). The question of the
origin of speech is a much disputed one, some
authorities contending that we gradually at-
tached meanings to certain primitive sounds;
others that we learned to exDress ourselves in
speech in order to express our thoughts.
There are certain definite areas in the brain
which send out the necessary motor currents,
rendering speech possible. Wehave two such
centers, one in each hemisphere, but we ordi-
narily use but one of them. Right-handed people
use the one in the left hemisphere, while left-
handed persons utilize the one in the right
hemisphere. Should this active area be injured,

the subject becomes dumb though the corres-
ponding area in the other hemisphere may be
quite intact. Hence the importance of teaching
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 36

children to become "ambidextrous"; both cen-


ters are thereby cultivated, and, if one is in-
jured, the patient can still talk. An extended
discussion of this entire subject may be found
in Dr. N. C. MacNamara's "Human Speech; its
Physical Basis."

HABIT.
We all know what is meant by forming habits
—either "good" or "bad." It is always easier to
do a thing a second time than at first. If any
specific action is performed a great number of
times, it becomes practically automatic, so that
we do not have to think about it at all. Every
step in walking is conscious at first; every
action in buttoning a button or tying a tie; in
time these actions become more or less un-
conscious. A habit, once formed, is hard to
break, but it is relatively easy to break in the
early stages of its formation.
Man has been defined as "a bundle of habits."
We hardly realize, perhaps, the extent to which

habit governs us not only in our physical
actions, but also in our trends and attitudes of
thought. "Habit second Nature?" exclaimed the
Duke of Wellington; "habit is ten times
nature!"
There is much truth in this assertion. When
we form a new habit, we cut a new groove in
the brain, so to speak, and nervous currents
find it much easier to travel over this beaten
path, rather than to cut a new one. Every time
that path is used, it becomes relatively easier
c

and easier for the nervous current to pass over


it; and the result is that, whenever a nervous
A? PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
cvrrent passes in its immediate vicinity, it tends
to shoot along that path, before it can be pre-
vented from doing so. The action in question
is then performed. Of course, this is only a
rough simile, but something of the sort takes
place, and i' enables us to visualize how habits
are formed, from the psycho-physiological
point-of-view.
Prof. William James, in his "Psychology,"
has laid down certain maxims, which are very
helpful, aDd may be applied in daily life to
our own advantage. These maxims, in brief,
are:
(1) Make your nervous system your ally
instead of your enemy. This is to fund and
Capitalize our acquisitions, and live at ease
apon the interest of the fund. For this we
must make automatic and habitual, as early
as possible, as many useful actions as we can,
and guard against the growing into ways that
£,re likely to be disadvantageous to us, as we
should guard against the plague. We should,
then, take care to launch ourselves with as
strong and decided an initiative as possible
upon any new venture. This will tend to cut
a deep initial groove, so to say.
(2) Never suffer an exception to occur till
the new habit is securely rooted in your life.
Each lapse is like the letting fall of a ball
of string which one is carefully winding- up;
a single slip will undo more than a great
many turns will wind up again. Continuity of
training is the great means of making the
nervous system act infallibly right.
(3) Seize the very first possible opportunity
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINS FRS 37
to act on every resolution you make, and on
every emotional prompting you may experience
in the direction of the nanus you aspire to
gain. It is not in the moment of their form-
ing, but in the moment of their producing
motor effects, that resolves and aspirations
communicate the new "set" to the brain.
Much dispute has arisen as to the best way.
to —
break a bad habit whether to abolish it

at once, or to taper it off by degrees thus
avoiding "shock." The consensus of opinion
seems to be that it is far better to break off
at once, providing one can stand it. Similarly,
the abrupt acquisition of a new habit is best, if
there is a real possibility of carrying it out.
If you set yourself an impossible task, and
fail to carry it out, this will leave you
weaker than before. But this is not necessary;
slight tasks will serve just as useful pur-
poses as more difficult ones in the formation
of new habits. And the ability to perform un*
pleasant tasks is the test of character! "The
faculty must be kept alive by a little grutuitous
exercise every day."

According to the habits we form lazy or in-

dustrious, bad or good our life, success, hap-
piness, destiny depend. An object-lesson of

some sort a book, a play, a living example
will perhaps modify and color our whole lives.
I cannot do better than to conclude this chap-
ter by a quotation from William James, which
I personally read when about nineteen years
of age,and which served to influence the whole
course of my life. It may, perhaps, have the
same effect upon others, and it is with the hope
: —

2.', PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGiNNERS


that it will, that I call attention to it here.
James says
"Let no youth have any anxiety about the
upshot of his education, whatever the line of
it may be. If he keep faithfully busy eacn
hour of the working day, he may safely leave
the final result to itself. He can with perfect
certainly count on waking up, some fine morn-
ing, to find himself one of the competent
ones of his generation, in whatever pursuit
he may have sinr/led out. Silently, between
all the details of his business, the power of
judging in that class of matter will have built
itself up withLi him as a possession that will
never pass away. Young people should know
this truth in advance. The ignorance of it
has probably engendered more discouragement
and faint-heartedness in youths embarking jn
arduous careers than all other causes put to-
gether."

TEL STRUCTURE OF THE MIND.


Great changes in our views as to the nature
or structure of the mind have taken place
within the past few years. The older psycholo-
gy held that the mind was a unit; that it was a
separate thing or entity, a sort of "sphere"
which, if it could ever be caught, would reveal
all the secrets of True Being! Accordingly,
they tried to catch this sphere-of-being, by in-
ward reflection or "introspection." But it was
never caught! There are many reasons why
this should be so, the chief reason being that
a subject cannot be an object also; it is as
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS z$

impossible for a thought to catch itself as it


would be to turn a hollow rubber ball inside
out, without tearing the cover.* But the
newer psychology studies the mind objectively,

from the outside by means of recording in-
struments, and does not depend upon introspec-
tion for its results. Further, the very concep-
tion of the nature of the "self," is different;
it is not now considered an entity, as of old;
but rather a compound thing, a complex, com-
posed of a variety of elements. Instead of being
considered a single gossamer thread, it is now
thought to be rather a rope, composed of in-

numerable, interwoven elements and these, in
turn, of still finer threads, until the subdivision
seems endless. The mind, in other words, is
thought to be compounded of innumerable sep-
arate elements; but held together or com-
pounded into one, by the normal action of the
will, of attention, and the grip upon the per-
sonality of the true Self. When this will is
weakened, when the attention is constantly
slackened, when the mind wanders, thij strand
of rope separates and unravels. The "threads"
branch out in various directions, no longer in
control of the central governing will; the Self
has become dissociated or split-up into various

minor Selves all but parts of the real total
Self; yet separate and distinct, nevertheless.
And if enough of these threads become joined
together, or interwoven, one with another, it

*lt can be shown, theoretically, that this is pos-


sible in the "fourth dimension," but not in the third.
This illustrates the difference between theory and

practice a point
Scientists to keep
it
m
might be well for Christian
mind
40 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
can easily be imagined that this second strand
of rope might become a formidable opponent
to the original strand; it might become so large
and strong, in fact, by the constant addition
of new threads, and the dissociation of these
from the first, true strand, that it would as-
sume a more important role, and become
stronger, and finally even control the whole.
What was originally but a single, fine, diver-
gent thread has become, in course of time, a
successful rival to the original strand of rope.

Now let us apply this analogy which is, of

course, only a rough analogy which seeks to
portray briefly, in visual terms, something that
seems to happen invisibly and internally in the
mental life. The mind as a whole represents
the rope; its elements or component parts are
the threads; and, under certain abnormal con-
ditions, these can be torn away from the origi-

nal Self like little rivulets, branching-off from
the main stream of consciousness, forming in-
dependent selves. This is an abnormal condi-
tion; a splitting of the mind, a dissociation of
consciousness. We here enter, therefore, the
domain of Abnormal Psychology. In such cases,
we have instances of so-called "double con-
sciousness," of "alternating personality;" or,
if there are three or more splits or cleavages,
of "multiple personality."*
So long as this split-off portion remains a

Although this theory of the "composite" nature


of mind is now generally held, Mr. Myers has con-
tended that the Self must have some fundamental
— —
unity to enable it to withstand the shock of death
nrovided it does so.
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 42

mass of sporadic thoughts, not much damage


has been done; but when they become abnor-
mally linked or associated together, forming
groups, then the abnormal conditions have be-
gun in earnest. These masses of subconscious
experiences are called "complexes," and give
rise to sorts of trouble. It must not be
all
thought that this complex formation is always
harmful; on the contrary, this very process,
when normally conducted, is the basis of our
educational processes. But when they are thus
conglomerated and consolidated outside the
I conscious mind, and function automatically, by
themselves, then they have become dangerous
to the mental stability. Their pressure and
influence may be felt in the conscious life
in fantastic imaginations, in fears, phobias and
obsessions, in morbid dreams, in morbid emo
tional and moral reactions throughout the en-
tire psycho-physical life. It is these automatic,
self-acting complexes which originate many of
the disorders of the mind.
This theory of the dissociation of conscious-
ness has enabled us to explain many puzzling
facts, hitherto inexplicable. Thus hysteria,
with multiform symptoms, and its internal
its
contradictions, has long been the stumbling-
block of medicine. Now it is no longer thought
to be a morbid physical state (dependent usual-
ly upon sexual disturbances), but it is regarded
rather as an indication of the splitting of the
mind, a dissociation which embraces all the
motor, physical and psychical activities. On
this theory, hysteria is readily explained, and
all its multiplex symptoms understood. In.
— !

42 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS


treating it, is unified, abnormal sug-
the self
gestibility is removed, and the patient is cured
Psychaesthenia, again, with its obsessions
and may be explained in the same man-
fears,
ner, and its cure rests upon the same prin-
ciples. The "attacks" cease so soon as the
psychical synthesis is effected and the morbid
eelf-consciousness removed.
Neurasthenia, long regarded as a pathological
state, due to auto-intoxication and similar
causes, is now thought to be due chiefly to dis-
sociation, caused by excessive fatigue one of —
the known contributory causes of this condi-
tion. —
Psycho-epilepsy a sort of fictitious imi-

tation of tt"5 real disease is due to precisely
Similar causes, and may be cured in a similar
manner. Hypnotism, Psycho-analysis and gen-
eral psychotherapy may be employed in such
cases.

ABSTRACT THOUGHT.
Two schools of philosophers — the "nominal-
ists" —
and the "conceptualists" for long waged
a wordy war as to whether or not the mind
could frame abstract or universal ideas. As a
matter of fact, it was ideas of universal or ab-
stract objects that was meant. These ideas
dealt largely with the sense of meaning, the
inner significance of the thing contemplated.
It is one of the unsolved mysteries of mind
how such a thing as abstract meaning can exist
at all, and how brain-changes can in any way
account for it. McDougall, as we know, is in-
r:tinea to question that they do so at all. Mean-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 4?

ing is a thing most difficult to account for on


a purely materialistic basis. Abstract think
ing is supposed to be one of the highest types
of thinking possible for us; it is the most im-
personal form of thought, and hence, in a
sense, the highest. Much has been written
upon this topic in Oriental literature. This
Question comes up for discussion, naturally, in
the Section devoted to the stream of thought,
and the consciousness of self; and further dis-
cussion of it will be found in that place.

THE CONSCIOUSNESS OF SELF.


We now approach the heart of our Problem;
the central core of Being! The consciousness
of self is ingrained in every one of us; we feel
our own inner being, our true self, ^ur per-
sonal identity, our individuality, as something
unique and exclusive. What is this Self? What
are thoughts, and who is the Thinker that
thinks them? Are the two identical, or are the
thoughts expressions of the flow of conscious-

ness? What is the true Self of what is it

composed and what relation has it to the
other functions and processes of the mind
which go on, and which are in some mysterious
way related to it? Only a brief answer to
these questions can be attempted in this Chap-
ter; for many lengthy volumes have been writ-
ten upon this question alone.
Our stream of consciousness is continuous
(except during sleep) states of mind tend
;

to succeed each other. Let us grant this to


begin with. The mind seems to be selective
44 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
in Its action, it is changing within itself, as
time passes; no two states of consciousness are
ever precisely alike. Further, "all conscious-

ness tends to personal form" a very impor-
tant fact indeed. A flow of more or less con-
tinous thought goes on; these thoughts follow
one another logically in sequence. (In in-
sane patients, of course, they are not log cal.
I speak here merely of the normal mind. Alco
it nunt be emphasized that nothing in this
Chapter touches upon the subconscious mind,
unless special mention is made of that fact.)
Each thought seems to be personal to the think-
er; it is not merely thought in itself. It is
my thought. This flow of thought is in con-
stant change; it flows as life itself flows; on
the other hand, thought is sensibly continuous!
The mental life might here be compared to a
river, which eddies and swirls, as it flows,
but is the same water, nevertheless.
One of the objects of thinking is to reach
certam conclusions. We might compare thought
to a bird in flight; its object is to p^rch upon
yon branch; its flight is a necessary transitive
stage to the branch. The chain of interme-
diate thought corresponds, on our analogy, to
the bird's flight. This flight is very different,
in the case of different people; with some, it
is straight and rapid; with others, it is tortu-
ous and lengthy. That is why different peo-
ple think differently. About each thought is a
eort of halo of relations, dimming off, as it
recedes, into other things. This is the so-
called "fringe of consciousness." All thought
it related to other thought, more or less di-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 40

rectly. Knowledge about a thing is knowledge


of its relations.
When I am thinking, I am aware of my per-
sonal existence; at the same time / am aware.
There thus seems to be a double self within

the Self the Self as known, and the Self as
knower. James calls the former the "ME" and
the latter the "I." Let us consider each of
these in turn.

The Me. This comprises all that a man can
call his; the most important of these spiritual
possessions are (1) the material me; (2) the
social me; and (3) the spiritual me.
The Material Me consists in (a) his body,
and (b) his possessions. The Socia 7 Me is the
side he shows to his friends and acquaintances;
this varies greatly in differing environments,
so that it has been said that "a man has as many
social selves as there are individuals who
recognize him." His name, fame, reputation,
success, etc., are classed as parts of this Me.
The Spiritual Me includes passing states of
consciousness; it is that part of us which
"goes out" to meet other thoughts. Feelings
and emotions affect this Me; self-appreciation,
self-satisfaction (or the reverse), self-com-
placency, etc., vitally affect this Me. Self-
seeking and self-preservation are a part of it.
These various Selves clash and conflict, to a
certain extent, among themselves; they do not
all want the same thing. "Happiness" prob-
ably consists largely in having all these Selves
working together in harmony, to the same end

The I. This was called the "pure ego" by
the older psychologists. It seems to be the
46 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS

background of the personality the string upon
which the pearls of thought are strung. Is
there a real "string," or are the pearls merely
separate, succeeding one another, as if they
were thus strung?
That is a difficult question. Passing thought
appears to be a unity; yet it consists of a num-
ber of different elements; there is no "fusing"
of thought. Ideas, thoughts, in this unlike
material threads, cannot be woven together
upon nothing; there must be some background
other than themselves. The human Soul has
been postulated as this "permanent back-
ground," uniting the whole, and withstanding
the shock of death. If true, this would serve
to explain the facts, and at the same time give
^is hope for survival. But whether or not such
a soul exists at all is a matter of controversy!
In the absence of its proof, we must, says

Science reject it. Consequently, we have today
a "psychology without a soul." Attempts have
been made to explain the facts without resort-
ing to it.
The usual argument is somewhat as follows:
There seem to be single, successive pulses in
the stream of thought, constituting the Ego.
These vary and change; they succeed one an-
other. May not consciousness, then, consist
merely in such successive states of conscious-
ness; may it not in truth be composed of them
— just as a succession of pearls may exist with-
out a unifying string? Each thought, on this
hypothesis, in some way gives birth to the
next, which also inherits its content; in other
words, the thoughts themselves are the think-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 47

ers. Were this true, we should have no


"abid-
ing entity," but merely a successive series of
thoughts, constituting the stream of conscious-
ness; this stream in turn composing the true
Self. Which of these views i? the correct one
can only be proved by showing that survival in
some form exists; and this can only be accom-
plished by Psychical Research! (See my little
book upon that subject, in the present series.)

(Mutations, multiplications, etc., of the Self,


have been touched upon in the Section devoted
to Abnormal Psychology; Insanity in its own
section; mediumships, possessions, etc., in the
book just mentioned.)
THE DUCTLESS GLANDS, AND PERSONALITY.
Within the past few years, a new school has
arisen, which contends that the ductless glands
in the body {or rather their secretions) affect
personality to a very great extent, and that, in
fact, personality is largely dependent upon
them for its peculiarities and general make-up
A good example of such teaching is to be found
in Dr. Louis Berman's book, "The Glands Regu-
lating Personality." Here, e. g. we read:
y

"Acuteness of perception, memory, logical


thought, imagination, conception, emotional
expression or inhibition, and the entire con-
tent of consciousness are influenced by the in-
ternal secretions. .
. All
. the different
nuances of personality are expressions of a
peculiar relationship, transitory or permanent,
between the endocrines and the viscera and
48 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
muscles. Conversely, behavior shows what a
person actually is chemically; that is, what
endocrine and vegetative factors predominate
in his make-up. The constructive imagination,
one of the few truly precious gifts of a per-
sonality, is probably the expression of a cer-
tain balanced activity of the ante-pituitary and
the post-pituitary (glands). ... It is pos-
sible to speak of thyroid moods, adrenal moods,
ante-pituitary or post-pituitary moods, gonadal
moods. Each of these is the echo in the mind
of cells stimulated or depressed, by concentra-
tion or dilution in the blood of particular in-
ternal secretions. . . ."

Whether or not such arguments will "hold


water" must be proved by further investiga-
tion. The pros and cons cannot be argued in
this place. It may be said, however, that such
extreme views as those outlined above are
not yet generally accepted, either by the medi-
cal profession or by psychologists, and it seems
an extreme statement of a partial truth. The
mental life is certainly influenced by the secre-
tion of the internal glands, but to what extent
it is fundamentally altered by them is still
sub judice.
MOTIVES.
Why dowe act as we do, under certain cir-
cumstances? There is usually some "motive"
at work, prompting our action. Human mo-
tives find their source in the subconscious
mind of man; here they take root, and their

products alone are seen by us mostly in
varied actions. Dr. James J. Jackson has writ-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 4a

ten an interesting volume on "Human Motives,'*


in which he distinguishes two sorts of motives
— motives of constructiveness and motives of
adaptation. These are, of course, biological in
origin. Usually, we speak of "good" and "bad"
motives. They all arise from a complex of
sentiments, which shape the form and tenor of

the subconscious thought which, in turn, is
symbolically expressed in thought and action.
Without discussing this question at greater
length, it may be said that all our motives

originate within the subconscious mind whnh
thus constitutes the spring of our thoughts and
actions.

CONSCIENCE.
Conscience was for long thought to be the
"voice of God" speaking to the spiritual ear of
man. Nowadays, a more matter-of-fact solution
has been sought, and, to a certain extent, found.
Modern psychological investigations have de-
prived conscience of its supernatural origin.
Until these newer researches were under-
taken, however, any clear understanding as to
the nature of conscience was impossible (See,
e. g. George W. Reid's "Conscience," and
Hastings Rashdall's "Is Conscience an Emo-
tion?") With a clearer understanding of the
subconscious mind, came greater light. We
now believe that conscience is, very largely, the
inhibitory action of a portion of the subcon-
scious mind, which inhibition is exercised
whenever the thoughts or the actions of the
individual run counter to those generally ac<
cepted by the community in which he dwells,
^0 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
or by his own individual up-bringing, or both.
It is a sort of Censor; but it is an acquired
thing, which has come into being, and evolved,
like everything else. What the conscience of
one man would prevent him from doing, an-
other will do without the slightest qualms.
Conscience is not, therefore, a universal prin-
ciple, judging good and bad, alike in all men.
It is a type of repression, exercised upon us
from within. Early moral precepts, etc., have
much to do "vith its formation. Here, then, we
rind the psychological basis for the existence
of conscien e, which is more or less active in
all of us, according to our heredity, environ-
ment, education, etc. It is a normal attribute
of 11)^ inner man.

INTUITION.
Tiiis is term loosely applied to certain
trie
inner feelings, giving rise to a form of convic-
tion as to the truth and reality (or the reverse)
of something then present in the mind. In-
tuitions are popularly supposed to be right,
and women are said to experience them far more
often than men! No statistical evidence is
available, so far as I know, upon either of
these questions; indeed, it may be said that
the whole subject has been grossly neglected,
from the psychological point-of-view.
Intuitions probably present themselves to
the mind as the result of subconscious menta-
tion. Ahidden and unknown process has been
going on within the mind, the result or product
of which finally emerges in vague form into
consciousness. Usually it takes the form of ?
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 61
more or less vague feeling. Miss Goodrich-
Freer, who had experienced many such in-
tuitions, attempted to analyze some of them,
from introspection, and contributed a valuable
Chapter entitled "How it Came into my Head;
the Machinery of Intuitions," in her book,
"Essays in Psychical Research." Her conclu-
sion is approximately that mentioned above.
Mr. Walter N. Weston has also written a book
entitled "Intuition," in which, however little
of value can be found.

INSPIRATION.
This term is generally employed ,o signify
"divine" —
inspiration ideas which are im-
planted directly into the human mind by some
external Divinity. Such a conception, need-
less to say, is not in accord with modern
thought. Throughout the ages, inspirational
addresses have been heralded as evidence of
the supernatural. The Pythoness at Delphi in-
haled the mystic vapor, rising from a cleft in
the rock, and gave forth her Oracular utter-
ances. (See Dempsey: "The Delphic Oracle";
H. N. Bate, "The Sibylline Oracles.") Even in
our own day, "mediums" give similar inspira-
tional addresses, at various spiritualistic cen-
ters.
It is not necessary, however, to consider
such utterances divine, or supernatural, for the
vast majority of them may be interpreted in
terms of psychology, with relative ease. They
are the products of the subconscious mind of
man. George N. Raymond has written an in-
teresting oook, entitled "The Psychology ot na-
52 PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS:
spiration," to which the reader may be referred
to further data upon this subject. While it is
somewhat religious in tone, it has some good
material in it. Like Intuition, this subject
has been much neglected by academic psychol-
ogy, and there is much need for a careful study
jf its various problems.

GENIUS.
Genius is a term hard to define, though we
all have a more or less clear idea as to what
is meant by a genius. He is a man who stands
apart from his fellows, head-and-shoulders
above them, mentally or artistically. But what
is it that thus causes him to rise above others?
Is it vision? Is it originality? clever antici-
pation? breadth? constructiveness? concentra-
tion? patience? common-sense? Doubtless
genius is all this, but it is also more! A genius
can perform feats which another man can not,
try as he will; and more than that, he per-
forms them without effort or without training,
very often! A certain type of genius amounts
to what we term a "prodigy," and then we have
cases of musical, mathematical or artistic
genius. These gifts are often exhibited very
early in life, for no apparent reason; they last
for a few years, and then disappear. Few
youthful prodigies retain their gifts into adult
iife. Often, their possessor is not even nor-
mally gifted with reason and common^sense in
other directions. Such cases as these are un-
usually difficult to account for. Theosophists
are apt to turn to the doctrine of "reincarna-
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 53

tion" for an explanation; but we must endeavor


to seek its explanation upon more naturalistic
lines.
Ostwald has contended that there are two
main types of genius; the one which is emo-
tional, erratic, temperamental, artistic, etc.
This type acquires its genius without "elbow
grease." The other is the intellectual type,
and hard work is essential for the creation of
genuis of this type.
Nordau, Lombroso, and others, have en-
deavored to prove that genius is closely allied
to insanity, in a sense, this is true; but fo
are dreams, and yet perfectly lao^mal and
healthy people dream. Because certain marks
of resemblance may be found, this does not
prove identity, by any means! A yeUow ball
my resemble an orange; but it is no> identi-
cal with it — certainly not in its most essential

part its interior, and its utility.
Genius is probably hereditary, to a certain
extent. R bot has gathered together a mass of
data, in this connection, which he has published
in his work on "Heredity." An interesting
study of this and allied questions may also be
found in N. K. Royse's book on "Genius."
Frederic Myers has advanced the idea that
genius represents an "uprush from the sub«
liminal consciousness" (subconsciousness) of
ideas matured below the threshold. These
ideas burst upon the surface, much as bubbles
might be said to break upon the surface of
water. When the stratum of the mind from
which these ideas originate is diseased, we
have insanity; when, on the other hand, it is

hi FSY^HOLiOGY *X)R BEGINNERS


healthy,we fin J the prod acts of genius. Some
such theory as this is doubtless true; but the
study of genius, from the scientific point-of-
view, is yet In its infancy, and the final solu-
tion of v ts mystery has yet to be found.

INSANITY.
Until the present generation, the word In-
sanity was popularly thought to mean either
imbecility on the one hand, or a raving maniac
or the other. We now know that this idea
is quite untrue; insanity is a disease of the
mind, just as small-pox is a disease of the
body. Moreover, we speak of insanities, and
not insanity; for there are many varieties
all shading-off one into another. A physician
who deals with such cases is called an "alian-
ist"* and the terms psychiatry, p3ycho-path-
ologj, abnormal psychology, etc., are employed
tc designate various branches of the study of
the diseased mind.
Certain types of insanity are, of course, due
to actual brain disease. A degeneration of the
physical substance of the brain may have taken
place. In other cases, however, no such gross
degeneration can be traced, and we must as-
sume microscopic alterations, or blood changes,
or nerves improperly functioning, or purely
physical changes and dissociations, as explained
above. There has grown-up an extensive litera-
ture on insanity, within the past few years. A
good primary book of this character is Dr. Ber-
nard Hart's "Psychology of Insanity." See also
Dr. Charles Mercier's "Sanity and Insanity."
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 5v

INTELLIGENCE-LEVELS.
The tests conducted upon the male adult
population of the United States, during the
Great War, revealed the astonishing tact that
Ine average mental "age" was approximately
twelve years; that is to say, the average adult
possesses an intelligence of a boy at that age.
The body may have grown, but the mind has
not! Of course, many were above that level;
but many fell below, and the above represented
the average. In many other countries, the
average would certainly have been far tower.
The majority, therefore, do not possess
normal adult minds; there has been an arrested
development. A scale of mental development
was accordingly constructed, and individuals
were placed somewhere in that scale. The hu-
man mind may be anything, from a genius to
an idiot. In this scale, there were many "defec-
tives." Those individuals who possessed a
mentality of from eight to twelve years, were
classed as "morons"; those who ranged from
three to seven years, "imbeciles"; and those of
two, and under, "idiots."
The mental-age or intelligence-level of any
person may be ascertained by special tests, de
vised for the purpose. These tests were origi-
nated by the psychologist Binet, but Terman
and others have greatly extended and amplified
the original methods. Such tests have now
been conducted extensively, and the result*";
show us that surprisingly low levels of in-
telligence are the rule, and not the rare excep-
tion. The importance of an extensive educa-
5C PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS
tional campaign is therefore manifest; and the
Editor of this series, Mr. Haldeman-Julius, is
carrying on one of the most important cam-

paigns in the world today by spreading gen-
eral culture and education. For, by this means
alor.e, and by suitable eugenic measures, can
the human race be elevated and improved, with
each succeeding generation.

THE PRACTICAL USE OF THE MIND.


There is an old saying that a man may be
worth only five dollars a day from his eyes
down, but he may be worth a million dollars
a year from his eyes up. That is to say, man's
value, both to himself and to the community,
lies in his brain, and the use he makes of it.
Manual labor is not well paid, proportionately,
to creative brain work, so that it is to our ad-
vantage *,o develop and utilize our brains to the
best possible advantage.
Cultivation of the mind will give us greater
powers of concentration; improved memory;
stronger will; more poise; soul judgment;
greater wisdom; increased value. But mere
book learning will not do this. We must learn
how to apply the mind in a practical way, to
the problems of daily life, and utilize the pow-
ers within ourselves. Curiously enough, there
is no text-book of this character in use in any
school or college in the world; but the neces-
sity of such a practical work is obvious. Boys
and girls emerge from College without the
slightest idea as to how to apply their minds
in any practical manner; their theoretical
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS S7

knowledge is of but slight advantage to them.


A few practical hints of this character should,
therefore, prove useful.I select the following
passages from Christian D. Larson's excellent
little book, "Your Forces: and How to Use
Them." He says:
"To make thinking scientific, there are three
leading essentials to be observed. The first is
to cultivate constructive mental attitudes, and
all mental attitudes are constructive when
mind, thought, feeling, desire and will con-
stantly face the greater and the better. A posi-
tive and determined optimism has the same ef-
fect, and the same is true of the practice of
keeping the mental eye single on the highest
goal in view. To make every mental attitude
constructive, the mind must never look down,
and mental depression must be avoided com-
pletely. . . .

"The second essential is constructive mental


imagery. Use the imagination to picture only
what is good, what is beautiful, what is bene-
ficial, what is ideal, and what you wish to real-
ize. Mentally see yourself receiving what you
deeply desire to receive. What you imagine,
you will think, and what you think, you will
become. . . .

"The third essential is constructive mental


action. Every action of the mind should have
something desirable in view and should have
a definite, positive aim. When the
. . .

average man
thinks of the future, he usually
pictures a variety of conflicting events and
conditions. He has nothing definite in mind.
There is no actual leadership therefore in the
l>© PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNKrtS
mind, and notbing of great worth can be ac-
complished. . . .

"Those people who fail, and who continue to


fail all along the line, fail because the power
of their minds is either in a habitual negative
state, or is always misdirected. If the power
of mind n not working positively and construc-
tively, for a certain goal, you are not going to
succeed. If your mind is not positive, it is
negative, and negative minds float with the
stream. We must remember that we are in
the midst of all kinds of circumstances, some
of which are for us and some of which are
agaiDst us, and we will either have to make
our cwn way or drift, and if we drift we go
wherever the stream goes. But most of the
6treams of human life are found to flow in the
world of the ordinary and the inferior. There-
fore, if you drift, you will drift with the in-
ferior, and your goal will be failure."
In this connection, it is well to remember
that negative people and non-constructive
minds never attract that which is helpful in
their circumstances. The reason why so many
people fail is due to the fact that they do not
fully and constructively apply the forces and
powers they possess, and the reason so many
succeed only to a slight degree is found in the
fact that only a small fraction of their power
is applied properly. The positive and construc-
tive use of the power of mind, with a definite
goal in view, will invariably result in advance-
ment, attainment and achievement; but if we
wish to use that power in its full capacity, the
-action of the mind must be deep. We must
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 62

not merely tnink from the surface of the mind;


ideas and aspirations must come from the deep
within. Such ideals and thoughts only come,
as a rule, after a certain period of quiet and
meditation. Hence the necessity of being
quite alone for a certain time each day and —
utilizing that time in actual reflection, and not
merely in idling the time away!
We have now learned something of the gen-
eral functions and powers of the mind; how it
works, its mechanisms and "faculties." Having
this ground-work, the next thing to do is to
apply this knowledge in our daily life, and
this can be done by following out suggestions

such as those given above provided the as-
piration and the will be present, to drive us
onward to achievement and success. The mind
of man assuredly his greatest possession; we
is
must first understand it; then use it! Theoreti-
cal and applied Psychology enable us to do this.

MIND AND BRAIN.


The relationship between brain and mind is
one of the most puzzling questions in the whole
field of scientific and philosophic thought. For
every thought we think, there is a correspond-
ing brain-change; that we know. The problem
is: Y/hat is the nature of this connection, and
how can a thought (an immaterial thing, appar-
ently) be connected in any actual sense with a
brain change (which is certainly a material
thing?) I have discussed this point at con-
siderable length in my little book on "Life,"
in the present series, and have therein stated
the various theories so far propounded, The
t$ PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNER&
may refer to such books
interested reader as
McDougall's "Body and Mind," Binet's "The
Mind and the Brain," Bain's "Mind and Body/'
Calderwood's "The Relation of Mini and
Brain," and C. A. Strong's "Why the Mind has
a Body," for further and detailed discussion
upon this subject.

PSYCHOLOGY AND PHILOSOPHY.


Inasmuch as psychology deals with the mind,
the spirit, the soul, (provided there be such a
thing), and with purely imponderable and
immaterial things generally, it is only natural
that psychology and philosophy should be
closory related. Many of the problems of
metaphysics, as a matter of fact, deal with
semi-psychological problems; among which
may be mentioned the relation of brain and
mind, free-will, the science of perceiving the
reality of the outer world (epistemology), etc.
How an external object and the "idea" of that
object can ever be in any way "related" to one
another, and how the mind can see a definite
"sameness" or similarity between the two is,
in fact, an extraordinary phenomenon. The
idea of a beefsteak and the beefsteak itself are,
indeed, as dissimilar as possible; and yet the
two somehow correspond! This relationship is
a remarkable fact, and awaits a full solution.
Again, every night when we Tall asleep, we
lose our individuality, in a eense; yet we are
sure of waking up the next morning the same

"person" who went to sleep with its mem-
ories, thoughts, ideas, emotions, etc., practically
PSYCHOLOGY FOR BEGINNERS 61

unchanged. How do we know that we shall do


so? What guarantee have we that we shall
wake up the same person that went to sleep,
and not some one else? As a matter of fact,
this does sometimes happen, in cases of alter-
nating personality; but such cases are excep-
tional, and the rule holds good. Yet conscious-
ness is constantly changing. We are not the
same person that we were five, ten, twenty
years ago; we do not consider ourselves morally
responsible, as it were, for acts committed by
ourselves, when children, any more than if
they had been committed by some one else.
Nevertheless, underneath all these, changes and
modifications, there seems to flow a stream of
"selfness," or uniformity, binding the whole
together, and we recognize that Self as Our-
self —
behind and beyond all. What is the in-
nermost nature of that Self? What is its
origin, its destiny? These are questions which
only the Science of the future can decide!
.
^-i
J